Jeffrey's Articles

Jeffrey Steele is an independent writer in Chicago who has written over 2,000 articles appearing in publications such as Barron's, Boston Globe, Chicago Sun-Times, LA Times, and more.

Twice the opportunity for holiday spending guilt

Written by Jeffrey Steele - One Comment

I ran into my old buddy Jake at the local outpost of a well-known, high-priced donut chain. I had just spent the better part of a sawbuck on a powdered donut hole and thimble of java when I noticed Jake seemed to be lacking his usual Christmas spirit.
His brow was furrowed, and he looked worried [...]

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Published on December 15th, 2014
Modified on December 13th, 2014 - One Comment
Filed under: Economy, Humor
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“Thinking Money” a rich change of pace from TV’s wasteland

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Have you ever wondered why your next-door neighbor must have a new car in his driveway every model year?
And not just a new car, but a new car with all the bells and whistles, like that 18-valve, turbo-charged, dyno-flex, hydroponic 4000 engine, 57-speaker audio system with Sistine Chapel acoustics and the buttery soft leathers imported [...]

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Published on November 19th, 2014 - Leave a Comment
Filed under: Consumer
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Zeroing in on target-date funds

Written by Jeffrey Steele - 2 Comments

For those investing for retirement, target-date funds sound like a great idea. Say you want to retire in 2030. Simply purchase a 2030 target-date fund, the wisdom holds, and the fund will do a lot of the heavy lifting for you when it comes to your investments.
But like that time you tried to pass your [...]

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Published on November 5th, 2014 - 2 Comments
Filed under: Planning, Retirement, Saving & Investing
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When Taking Vows, Vow to Spend Less

Written by Jeffrey Steele - One Comment

Talk to anyone 19 to 90, and they’re likely to have very clear memories of their first experience going steady. Mine came at the decidedly ancient age of 17, and I can recall that star-crossed life chapter like it happened last week.
My perky, mahogany-haired, 16-year-old inamorata and I didn’t have much in common other than [...]

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Published on October 22nd, 2014 - One Comment
Filed under: Family & Life, Frugality, House & Home
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Is retirement good for you or bad for you?

Written by Jeffrey Steele - 3 Comments

A neighbor who lives directly below me in my condominium building wakes up before 6 a.m. each morning, gets dressed, skulks outside and on some days begins looking for parked vehicles of neighbors he doesn’t like.
Under the protective cloak of a cover of darkness, he removes a key from his pocket, walks alongside those cars, [...]

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Published on October 8th, 2014 - 3 Comments
Filed under: Retirement, Working
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Are Your Adult Children Destroying Your Retirement?

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I can still remember the days when the term “generation gap” was all the rage. Back in the late 1960s and early 1970s, that term was bandied about to describe the yawning philosophical chasm between Baby Boomers and their parents on topics as diverse as the Vietnam War, the length of one’s hair, and different [...]

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Meet the Enemy of Retirement Security: Procrastination

Written by Jeffrey Steele - 4 Comments

Last year, I signed up for a program called “Connections” through my college alma mater. The program is designed to bring a group of the college’s current juniors and seniors to the big city, for a pow-wow with both recent graduates and ancient grads like myself, who work in the students’ prospective career fields.
On the [...]

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Published on September 10th, 2014 - 4 Comments
Filed under: Education, Retirement, Saving & Investing
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I Was the Victim of a Financial Bully

Written by Jeffrey Steele - 3 Comments

These days, there’s a lot of attention being focused on the subject of bullying. This emphasis is well justified. The whole bullying experience tends to be destructive and wreak long-term consequences. As one who was, at times, both bullied and a bully as a kid, I can testify that while I have almost repressed the [...]

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Published on August 27th, 2014
Modified on August 26th, 2014 - 3 Comments
Filed under: Family & Life
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New Businesses Foreordained to Failure

Written by Jeffrey Steele - One Comment

In this rapidly changing world, it’s comforting to know that some things never change. They are as immutable as the Rock of Gibraltar, as permanent as the sands of the Mojave, and as unalterable as the seven seas and stars above.
Want an example? Try new business failure rates. The percentage of new businesses that go [...]

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Published on August 13th, 2014 - One Comment
Filed under: Working
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20/20 Vision on 20-Something Investing

Written by Jeffrey Steele - 2 Comments

About 35 years ago, when I was new to the corporate world and fired with ambition, but not the least bit fired-up about staying with my big corporate employer, I had a series of bewildering conversations with colleagues, many even younger than I.
See, the place where I worked had long been the number one name [...]

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Published on July 30th, 2014 - 2 Comments
Filed under: Planning, Retirement, Saving & Investing
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